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Nordstrom Trend Show


Nordstrom Trend Show NARS Makeover (edited)

June 3, 2012
This past weekend I attended a Nordstrom Trend Show with my sister. It’s been a few years since my last trend show (this was my sister’s first). For this particular event, I was particularly excited about our NARS makeovers, hoping to learn new tips and tricks from the NARS specialists on how to mix and match various shades from one of our favorite brands. My sister and I both have loved NARS since our college days.

For this makeover, I asked for a smokey-eye look incorporating NARS Cordura Duo. The artist decided to go in a different direction focusing on other items, but did incorporate a tiny bit of the bronze/golden side of Cordura. The colors she used created a nice palette, but the application wasn’t flattering and I looked like I had punched eyes. The final result wasn’t one of the best I’ve had. My sister confirmed so right after with a discrete shake of her head. (It’s always good to bring a trusted friend with you to these events to tell give you an honest assessment.) I immediately ran to another counter to wipe off the eye makeup. I did get some new ideas on colors to coordinate but revised/edited the look as soon as I got home. Below is the edited version of my makeover. I’ll indicate what was originally used as well for inquiring minds.

Personally Edited Version List of Products Used


  • Sheer Matte Foundation in Santa Fe (testing a sample of this color)
  • Duo Concealer in Custard/Ginger
  • Loose Powder in Eden (I substituted my own powder at home)


  • The Multiple in Laguna
  • Powder Blush in Deep Throat


  • Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base (giving this a second try with a sample)
  • Shimmer Eyeshadow in Cyprus (applied all over lid)
  • Eyeshadow Duo in Brumes (dark navy smudged along lash line, then smoked upwards slightly, a tiny bit of the gray side mixed in at the end to darken/define)
  • Eyeshadow Duo in Cordura (golden shade, applied with a fluffy brush blended on top of the navy, mixing/blending it to diffuse harsh edges)
  • Larger than Life Mascara (my current favorite mascara)


  • Velvet Matte Lip Pencil Belle du Jour
  • Larger Than Life Lip Gloss Gold Digger

The products I used, more photos and swatches:

 Original Makeover Version 
(not photographed/swatched, you can see that the look was only slightly adjusted)
  • Cheeks:
    • The Multiple in Laguna
    • Powder Blush in Lovejoy (I think this combo will look better with a softer eye)
  • Eyes:
    • Smudge Proof Eyeshadow Base
    • Shimmer Eyeshadow in Cyprus (applied on inner corners blended to the 1/2 way point of lid)
    • Larger Than Life Eyeliner in Rue Saint-Honoré (applied in a
      winged cat liner way, blended up, found the pencil too harsh to be used
      as a blended eyeshadow)
    • Eyeshadow Duo in Cordura (golden side, applied on outer corners
      and blended in for a fake crease, not flattering for Asians without
  • Lips:
    • Pure Sheer SPF Lip Treatment in Paloma (so sheer it didn’t show up)
    • Larger Than Life Lipgloss in Pirée (also sheer, sometimes sheer+sheer=meh)

If you haven’t been to a Nordstrom Trend Show, I suggest you do attend if you get a chance. What to expect? high-energy speakers, brightly lit runways with models, mini talks from brand specialists/artists, giveaways, cheering pumped-up women. All what seem like the perfect ingredients for a successful event. I’ve enjoyed
many of them in the past, especially ones with special guest appearances like Deborah Lippmann (that one was so awesome!). My experience this particular time was luke-warm at best. It all seemed like one hard-sell after
another. Each speaker claimed to have the “best in industry” miracle-type of products. I do appreciate the efforts to teach/expose as many brands, trends and skincare items as possible in a short period of time, but I felt the two hours lacked substance. There was too much covered without focus. I left feeling like I didn’t learn as much as I
had hoped to.

In general, I have liked Nordstrom Trend Shows. Nordstrom is indeed at the top among retailers for having best in class customer service. Trend Shows offer an excellent environment to generate buzz, have fun with friends, learn new tricks and makeup tips and brands etc. However I feel that the sheer volume in the number of women that attend, overbooked “makeover” appointments, hard-sell gimmicks etc. water down the quality of customer focus. Bottom line, in the future I’ll look for smaller events to attend with trained national artists (versus free-lance artists who in my experience have mixed levels of talent) or make an appointment with my favorite specialist/counter manager with specific brands for a better result.

Have you had a recent NARS makeover or attended a Trend Show event? What were your thoughts? Experiences?

NARS Ita Kabuki Brush – How Do You Use It?

June 19, 2010
I got the NARS Ita Kabuki brush as an amazing gift-with-purchase at a recent Nordstrom Trend Show Event. It’s one of the NARS Kabuki Artisan Brushes and this one has a wide flat brush with black goat hair and comes in a nice black box. I love that the brush is extremely soft and feels so smooth on the skin. The shape intrigues me as I am enamored with odd-shaped brushes – however, there’s a slight issue: I do not know how to use this.

Do any of you have it? If so, how do you use it? I know it’s meant for contouring and highlighting but I still feel clumsy swiping it. It’s so wide that it covers my entire cheek and then some. I need to go back to the NARS counter to ask them to show me how it’s to be used. If any of you own this, I’d love to hear your tips on how you use this one!

I did have the regular Ita Brush before but never used it so I ended up gifting it away to another happy home. I do have to say I’m a bit worried about how I’m going to keep the handle clean and prevent it from getting sticky.

Have you ladies ever been to a Nordstrom Trend Show? For those not familiar, call your local Nordstrom and ask! I think has a list of events per store, so you can search in advance. The events vary per store, but it seems like the Nordstroms near me typically have around 2 Trend Show Events per year. They are a store-wide event that starts early in the morning (around 8 am) for an hour presentation featuring various products, trends and models wearing the season’s current makeup trends. They have raffle giveaways, coffee, cute gift bags. All you have to do is sign up in advance and you can get your makeup done at any counter too. Most of the lines usually have some sort of promotion or gift. They can be hit or miss. And also very crowded. On more recent events, if I can’t get the first makeover opening appointment, I’ve opted to skip the show and just get my makeup done during one of the later time slots to avoid the crowds and pushing (yes, sometimes pushing).

I’ve been to about 4 in the past few years and the ones I’ve been to are really fun (although extremely packed). The gift with purchases can be a hit or miss sometimes but recently, there was an incredible promotion going on with NARS. I was so excited to get my makeup done again but unfortunately I had last minute change of plans and wasn’t able to attend. Thankfully, my sales associate was willing to do a pre-sale for me so I was still able to get the GWP. The first level GWP was with a $75 purchase and the step up (to get the multiple duo and brush) was with over $150. Definitely well worth the purchase and much better than previous GWPs at other counters which have been a mini double-sided lipgloss with a $75 purchase which I think is hardly an incentive.

Here is the GWP: Mini South Beach Multiple, Multiple Duo,
Full-Sized Mindgame Lipstick, 2 Mini Lipglosses, Kabuki Ita Brush


Chanel Makeover Event: Nordstrom

June 3, 2009

Yet another makeover breakdown from Chanel! This one was done soon after the new aqualumiere lipsticks, gloss liners and lip glosses were released in the US.

* Prepped with Chanel skincare items
* Teint Innocence Compact in Beige 2.0
* Poudre Douce in Peche Tendre

* Bronze Universelle on cheeks to contour (this has been replaced with the Soleil de Tan Bronzing Makeup Base which is similar)
* Irreelle Blush in Be Bop (now discontinued, an alternative without shimmer is the Tweed Pink)
* Soft Touch Eyeshadow in Nomade on apples of cheeks (yes, she used the eyeshadow as blush!)

* Eye Base in Bright
* Soft Touch Shadow in Nomade all over lids
* Soft Touch Shadow in Tigre along upper lash line blended up 1/2 way up eye

* Lip Definer in Nude (they seem to make this liner work for just about every lip look)
* Aqualumiere Lipstick in Stresa (hot strawberry pink)
* Aqualumiere Lipgloss in Bon-Bon


Nordstrom Trend Show: Chanel Makeover

June 1, 2009

This look was done a couple years ago, so I can’t remember the exact date. I asked for a pink lip and defined eyes. And I apologize, I can’t remember the brushes or skincare she used. All products Chanel.

* Teint Innocence (Liquid) Shell 1.5
* Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Narcisse
* Joues Contraste Powder Blush in Rose Petale (just dabbed on cheeks for m
ore depth)

* Professional Eyeshadow Base (don’t recall the name, but it was a nude shade)
* Soft Touch Eyeshadow in Lotus

* Intense Eye Pencil in Noir (black)

* Soft Touch Eyeshadow in Ebony applied over the liner to give a smokey eye (this one smudged badly, so did not purchase this, I use Black Star instead, which is photographed below)

* Precision Lip Definer in Tulip
* Hydrabase Lipstick in Morning Rose
* Glossimer in Sesame

For a more pink lip, use Imaginaire Glossimer over Tulip Lipliner and Morning Rose Hydrabase. This combo will also go well with Narcisse or Rose Petale Blushes.